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Interpretation Requests

District interpreters are available on a first-come, first-served basis, in person or over the phone, and are available for large audience district/school related events, parent-administrator meetings, parent-teacher conferences, etc.

Guidelines for Submitting a work order Interpretation Request

Translation and Interpretation (T&I) Services provides on-site interpretation for district-wide meetings and some school events. To obtain interpretation services for these meetings, complete and submit an Interpretation Request work order at least 5-7 working days prior to the meeting date. You may also submit a work order request for the use of the interpreting equipment (see below). 

  • Submit with your request any supporting materials relevant to the meeting or event such as agendas and presentation documents to allow preparation and assure accurate interpretation.
  • For school-site meetings or events, administrators are encouraged to use bilingual staff approved by Human Resources. If an interpreter cannot be identified, please contact the English Learner Center for further assistance at ext. 92140

  • Submit one request separately per event. 

  • Priority, special or same day requests require approval.  Short-notice requests  are accommodated based on availability and level of urgency.
  • In order to maximize the effectiveness of interpretation services, the site requester should follow the appropriate process indicated in the Translation and Interpretation Handbook

Prior to the meeting

  • Make sure your interpretation request communicates the exact meeting location, including room number/name, expected number of people in need of interpretation services, and if the use of interpretation equipment is required.
  • Confirm parent attendance within one business day in advance and,if they cannot attend, immediately notify the English Learner Center and provide the work order number as reference for service cancellation.  On-site cancellation is strongly discouraged due to possible site incurred costs. 
  • Understand that the role of the interpreter is to communicate from source language to target language accurately and completely. Interpreters are not facilitators or advocates (Please see guidelines for working with interpreters below).

Guidelines for submitting a Phone Interpretation Request

There are many advantages to requesting a phone interpreter for small interpretation settings. It is fast, simple and convenient. It is also effective and saves the site money. If any participant is unable to attend and the meeting is rescheduled or cancelled, the site does not pay for the service since it was not used (if applicable). Phone interpretation is not meant for large groups, simultaneous interpretation formats, or large conference settings.  It can be used for one-on-one meetings, last-minute interpretation needs, or to set up a future meeting that requires in-person interpretation.


Preparation Steps

  • Select a distraction-free/private environment, such as an office or classroom.
  • Have a telephone with speakerphone or conferencing capabilities.
  • Make sure all parties are present before dialing in. 
  • Call our office at 760.726.2170 ext. 92140 to initiate phone interpretation services.
  • Do not keep an interpreter on hold.  In most cases, it takes less than 3 minutes to connect to an interpreter.

Once the meeting begins (review with participants)

  • Your meeting begins once you are connected to the interpreter.
  • Address the non-English speaker(s) directly, not the interpreter.
  • Speak clearly and in short sentences.
  • Allow time for the interpreter to speak after each complete thought.
  • Encourage your guest(s) to ask questions.
  • If multiple people in the room, make sure to speak one at a time.
  • Avoid side conversations

Individualized Education Program (IEP) meetings. 

Interpreters for IEPs must be requested through the Special Education Department first.  Please contact Jean Potter at (760) 726-2170 ext. 92902 for further questions.


If you have any further questions, please contact the English Learner Center at 760.726.2170 ext. 92140.

For feedback about this site please send an email to: Translations@vistausd.org


Having Trouble Accessing the Work Order system? Please contact servicedesk@vistausd.org or ext. 92500 further assistance.


Adapted from Denver Public School systems/Multicultural and Outreach Services